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Valley of the Shadow

Valley Spirit: November 11, 1868

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The Result of the Election
(Column 01)
Summary: Laments the Democratic defeat and triumph of Grant. Tries to pump up spirits by pointing out states like New York where Democrats triumphed. Also shows increased vote totals for Democrats since 1864 and insists they will do better in the future.
Full Text of Article:

Once more the Democracy have met defeat. The Radical party has triumphed. General Grant has been elected President, and Schuyler Colfax Vice President, of the United States. For this result we have been preparing ourselves since the October election. The triumph of the Radical party then in the States of Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Indiana, insured its triumph at the Presidential election. We are not surprised therefore.

But although not surprised, we do not disguise the fact that we feel deeply mortified at the result. It was our honest belief that the success of the Democratic party in this contest would have done much towards relieving the country of its financial embarrassment--that it would have given a fresh impetus to business of every kind--that it would have wheeled all the States of the Union into line and, by restoring peace to them, have enabled them to contribute their share toward the liquidation of the public debt. And more, that it would have abolished military government in this country, and brought us back to the quiet and cheap reign of the Constitution.

The triumph of the Radical party does not allow us to hope for any of these things. Its record was before the country. The unprecedented extravagance that marked its administration--its unconcealed admiration for the pomp, pageantry and "pickings" of a military government and its undisguised advocacy of the doctrine of negro equality--all these commit it in a system of still more lavish expenditure and, consequently, more frightful taxation. The business of the country must continue to languish--the currency will continue to depreciate--the National credit will continue to sink until wide spread bankruptcy and ruin startle the nation from its dream of security and prosperity.

The Radicals will insist, and rightfully too, that the result of the election is an endorsement of the Congressional reconstruction policy. They will demand that this policy shall be continued. The majority of the white population of the South will remain disfranchized. Those governments will be placed entirely in the hands of the negroes. The negroes, puffed up with an aura of their importance, will become arrogant, overbearing, tyrannical. They will commit outrages of the most brutal kind. Riots will ensue and the continuation of military governments then become a necessity to keep the peace. And in four years more, the Radicals will justify the continuation of military rule on the ground that the Southern whites would not allow the negroes to ride rough shod over them. The lands of the South will remain uncultivated and of course unproductive. The burden of paying the expenses of the government and the interest of the public debt will thus fall upon the North. But as the people of the North have just voted to continue that sort of thing, they should not complain.

But although we have been beaten in the Presidential election, all is not lost. The Democracy have carried the Empire State gloriously and elected that gifted young statesman, John T. Hoffman, to the Gubernatorial chair. And that, too, in place of Reuben R. Fenten, the present Radical Governor.

Little New Jersey has redeemed herself by electing a Democratic Governor in place of Marcus L. Ward, the present Radical incumbent. We have a majority in the New Jersey Legislature also, thereby securing a United States Senator in place of Mr. Frelinghuysen, Radical, whose term expires on the fourth of March next. The Democratic gain in Congressmen is very considerable. From present appearance we will have in the next Congress at least thirty Democrats more than were in the last Congress.

Whilst the Democracy have not gained all for which they fought--whilst they have not succeeded to the extent that they had hoped and expected to succeed--and whilst they have good reason to feel mortified at their failure--they nevertheless ought to be proud of the gallant fight which they have made. They fought against the prestige of a great military name--they fought against enormous sums of money. Clinging to the constitution--wedded to the principles of civil liberty--striking boldly to save the slight remnant of our republican government--equivocating on no issue but taking a decided stand upon all issues--without money and without clap-trap of any sort--they advanced far in front of the position occupied in 1866. They have not only maintained their organization as it was then, but they have added to its numbers. They carry more States than they did in 1864. They are beaten much less on the popular vote than they were in 1864. Lincoln's majority in 1864 was greater than Grant's is in 1868. McClellan received but 21 Electoral votes in 1864. Seymour will receive about 100.--Lincoln's majority on the popular vote in 1864 was 406,312. Grant's is less than 200,000. Add to the Democratic vote, those who have been disfranchised by the arbitrary power of Congress--who if they had been allowed to exercise the right of suffrage would have voted the Democratic ticket--and the fact is established beyond question that General Grant, with all his boasted popularity, is a minority president. He is not the choice of a majority of the qualified voters of the Union. This fact ought to make him modest at least.

Let the Democratic party therefore be proud of this contest. Let it keep its organization perfect. It will move on to victory afterwhile. Be not discouraged. Stand firm. Never abandon the right. But there is no necessity for this exhortation.--The Democratic party never dies. It has more vitality in this the hour of its defeat than the Radical party has in the hour of its victory. Let us labor on; and wait patiently.

Agitating the Negro
(Column 01)
Summary: The paper predicts that the Republicans' next move will be to push for African American suffrage in Pennsylvania.
How Are You, Bonds?
(Column 03)
Summary: The paper gloats over a three cent fall in the value of bonds since the election of Grant. The paper asserts that many bond-holders voted for Grant under the assumption that prices would rise.
The Late Fair
(Column 03)
Summary: Joseph Beaumont writes the Spirit to complain of unfair judging at the Chambersburg Fair.

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Sworn In
(Column 01)
Summary: W. S. Stenger was sworn in as District Attorney, Judge Rowe presiding.
(Names in announcement: W. S. Stenger, Judge Rowe)
[No Title]
(Column 01)
Summary: The new town hall in Orrstown was dedicated. Many members of the Fraternity of Odd Fellows participated.
Convocation of the Episcopal Church
(Column 02)
Summary: The South Central Convocation of the P. E. Church will be held in Chambersburg. The Rev. Robert J. Keeling will give the main sermon.
(Names in announcement: Rev. Robert J. Keeling)
Torch Light Procession
(Column 02)
Summary: A torch-light procession and general illumination will be held in Chambersburg to celebrate the election of Grant. The paper jokes that the "bread and butter brigade" and all candidates who wish to be appointed to the post office will lead the march.
(Column 04)
Summary: John F. Woods and Miss Mary J. Hamilton, both of Roxbury, were married on November 1st by the Rev. W. Howe.
(Names in announcement: John F. Woods, Mary J. Hamilton, Rev. W. Howe)
(Column 04)
Summary: Jeremiah Siffter of Letterkenny and Miss Mary E. Ashway of Green were married on October 19th at the residence of the bride's father by the Rev. E. Dutt.
(Names in announcement: Jeremiah Siffter, Mary E. Ashway, Rev. E. Dutt)
(Column 04)
Summary: Martha Ferner died in Southampton Township, Franklin County, on October 25th. She was 57 years old.
(Names in announcement: Martha Ferner)
(Column 04)
Summary: Joseph Bossennan died near Mercersburg on November 3rd. He was 58 years old.
(Names in announcement: Joseph Bossennan)

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